is a quiet little Texas town, and it’s getting quieter. Kids
are vanishing, disappearing like tumbleweeds in the desert wind.
something—is taking them.
Adventure. Romance. Suspense. The
for Fans of Blake Crouch, Stephen King, J.A. Konrath, and Dean
cents 09/26-10/02 **
TOP TEN AUTHORS I LIKE
I’ve got this bad habit of making Top Ten lists for everything.
Naturally, as a wordsmith, books and authors are two categories I am wholly interested in. You’d think after four decades of life I would have a clearly defined set of favorite authors and books, lined up and ready to go. Except as my tastes change, and I read more books, my TOP TEN AUTHORS list changes, too. Not too much. Just a little here and there. And sometimes I drop someone and then add them right back. Or I find a new favorite and rip through fifteen of their books. The woes of a reader.
Narrowing down favorite books is pretty tough. I’ll do that another time. For now, here are my favorite authors. Drum roll please…
- Charles Dickens
Coming in at #10 is Charles Dickens. While some kids despised being forced to read Dickens in high school, I secretly loved it. Dickens knew how to tell a story, and his writing was beautiful in a flowery, slightly overly wordy kind of way. Word Nerds Unite!
- Nelson Demille
DeMille is one of the top writers in thriller & cop books, which is probably my favorite genre to read since I reached what I loosely call adulthood. The John Corey books are dynamite, especially if you’re into wisecracking and politically incorrect main characters.
- James Michener
Michener was the master of research. He probably should have been named Google. He often traveled to places and did months of research before building a story around the historical facts.
- Lee Child
Two words: Jack Reacher.
- John Irving
I’ve always felt drawn to Irving’s writing. It’s quirky, and sometimes wordy like Dickens, but it’s got this hidden magic that I simply connect with.
- John Grisham
Grisham is just a great writer. Period. The stories mostly revolve around lawyers and the lawyerly life, but hey … it works. Big time.
- Robert Parker
I think I stumbled onto Parker at the recommendation of my dad. Once I bit into that first Spenser novel, I ripped through another twenty-five at an incredible pace. And the few westerns he did were the best. I only wish I’d discovered him sooner.
- Harlan Coben
I had the pleasure of meeting Harlan Coben in 2015. What a down-to-Earth guy. I confessed to him that I’d never read one of his books. I only knew of his pending visit to Ramstein Air Base, in Germany, because I was tied into the library through our local writers’ group. He left such an impression that I ran out and grabbed one of his books the next day. Mr. Coben is one heck of a writer.
- Ken Follett
Talk about beautiful, epic stories with history as the landscape. Pillars of the Earth, The Century Trilogy … all I can say is WOW!
- Stephen King
Yep, old Stephen King is my #1. He’s a dynamite writer and storyteller, as are the others on this list. So then: why is King number one, and not one of these other fine yarn spinners? Fair or not, the answer to that will always be partially because he was the author that ignited the fire inside me as a reader, and his stories made me want to write stories of my own so that maybe I could make people feel that same magic.
And there you have it! My personal Top Ten Fave Authors, and probably my favorite top ten of all top tens. They aren’t any better or worse than YOUR top ten authors. Yours are yours, and mine are mine, and what brings author and reader together is something magical that’s different for everyone; it’s a personal affair.
*Honorable Mentions: Bret Easton Ellis, Hugh Howey, Blake Crouch, Donna Tartt, and Charles Bukowski.
Thanks for sharing time with me. Keep reading, world!
Hopkins is originally from Galveston, Texas, but has lived all over
the world during his 22 years in the Air Force.
was born in the middle of the 1970s, owned an Atari, and loves 80s
music. He can use a card catalog like nobody’s business.
Bart likes to travel, enjoys pretending he’s a photographer, and
shares as much time as possible with his beautiful wife and three
awesome children. They own a Westie Yorkie named Lulu … or maybe
Lulu owns them.
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